Baby Steps

The Baby Steps Newport Program holds Saturday morning, Thursday evening, Thursday morning, and Tuesday evening sessions.  Saturday morning sessions are held from 9:30-11:00 a.m. at our Head Start in Newport. Thursday evening sessions are held from 5:00-6:30 p.m. at our Head Start in Newport. Our Thursday morning session is from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at the Middletown Public Library. Our Tuesday evening session is for Spanish speaking families, held at Conexion Latina in Newport from 4:30-6:00 p.m. The program is actively enrolling Newport County families with a child/children aged newborn to 5 years to participate. There are no income requirements. New families that would like to sign up should fill out an intake form. For any questions, contact Lexi Lewis, Baby Steps Coordinator, at 401-367-2001, ext. 2226 or email at

Baby Steps is a parent education program designed to help parents/caregivers of children from birth to 5 years of age gain a better understanding of child development as well as acquire the skills to raise happy, healthy children.  Modeled after the “Baby College® of Harlem,” Baby Steps was established in 2009 through a consortium of educational and social service agencies in Newport. It includes educational sessions on child behavior and positive parenting; communication and language development; developmentally appropriate learning and cognitive development.

The goal of Baby Steps is to ensure that each child, by the age of 5, develops a full and vibrant vocabulary along with social skills that will effectively prepare him/her for pre-K or kindergarten.  Another goal of the program is to ensure that parents/caregivers receive the education and support they need during the pivotal first three years of their children’s lives.

COVID-19 Update

All sessions are back to being held in person. This is subject to change to virtual, if so, participants will be contacted.

People We Serve

Baby Steps serves families with children from birth to 5 years of age, as well as expectant parents. Families throughout Newport County are welcome to join our program. Older siblings are always welcomed.

Key Features

Baby Steps helps parents/caregivers understand how their children learn, communicate, and develop. Monthly sessions include:

  • Child development instruction that helps parents develop skills to be successful first teachers to their children and to understand how their children learn
  • Reading and music sessions
  • Fun arts and crafts activities for the whole family to enjoy
  • Free books and supplementary diapers and wipes
  • Referrals to social services and health care as needed
  • Transportation (if needed) to and from each session

Resources for Parents

Offering Field Trip experiences (1-2 per year)

Educational presenters

2023 Baby Steps Monthly Sessions Dates

Parenting Program Expanded – (Baby Steps Offering Thursday Evening Sessions), Newport This Week, January 17, 2019 – This feature article shares information about Baby Steps and its expansion of services.

Our Turn: Victor Capellan and Lisa Hildebrand: First Three Years Shape Life’s Success – This Providence Journal opinion article tells parents reading to their children from infancy will positively affect their futures, and it gives some practical advice on the subject. -posted November 24, 2018

Location(s) of the Program

*The mailing address is EBCAP 8 John H. Chafee Blvd. Newport, RI 02840

Hours of Operation

The Baby Steps families may choose to attend the following sessions:

The Saturday Morning Program normally takes place on the 1st Saturday of each month (September-June) from 9:30-11:00 a.m., with a continental breakfast served upon arrival.

The Thursday Evening Program normally takes place from 5:00-6:30 p.m. on the 3rd Thursday of each month and includes a light, kid friendly dinner.

The Thursday morning session takes place at Middletown Public Library from 10:30-11:30 a.m.

Our Tuesday evening session is for Spanish speaking families at Conexion Latina from 4:30-6:00 p.m. and includes dinner. There is a wait list for this session.

Dates may be subject to change in order to accommodate holiday schedules, so be sure to check the calendar that you will receive in your welcome packet following registration.

Lexi Lewis, the Baby Steps Coordinator, is primarily available on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.  She can be reached via email all week at Feel free to call and leave a message at 401-367-2001, ext. 2226 and she will get back to you.

How You Can Enroll

To enroll in the Baby Steps program, please use the following link-

How You Can Help

We have many opportunities for volunteers, ranging from participation in our Saturday sessions, to helping solicit donations and assisting with administrative work. Those who are interested can contact the Baby Steps Coordinator at 401-367-2001, ext. 2226.

Families who participate in the Baby Steps program do so free of charge. Operating costs are raised through annual board giving, community donations, and grants. Donations are greatly appreciated and can be made online or by mailing a check, payable to East Bay Community Action Program (“Baby Steps” in memo), to: East Bay Community Action Program, Attn: Finance Department, 19 Broadway, Newport, RI 02840.

Thank you!